The Joint Legislative Study Commission on Municipal Annexation is allegedly set to meet for the first time on December 4, 2008 and then again on December 17, 2008.
This commission was set up in the 2008 studies bill.
I have criticized this commission as being a sham and explained that it
wouldn't have enough time to do any meaningful work. I never
imagined the legislature would have the audacity to meet for the first
time in December. Somewhere the League is laughing.
I always have thought annexation commissions in general were a bad
idea--there is nothing to study. However, the House commission
that was studying annexation looked like it might develp something
positive in terms of recommendations. However, its work was
effectively killed off through the creation of this new joint
"This commission will have way too little time to meet and come up with
any meaningful recommendations before the 2009 session. The
commission expires at the start of the next legislative session or
earlier. There will be excuses like there are elections,
holidays, etc so it is hard to meet. The language is drafted in a
way so that it may never meet (which would be good)."
with about three months to go before the end of the year, plus
elections and holidays, a joint committee, which has not been formed
yet, has to learn the issue (something the House committee wouldn't
have had to do) and actually develop recommendations before the end of
House-Senate commission still hasn't met yet. It was supposed to
finally meet on October 22nd, but that meeting was just
cancelled. Its first meeting was going to be listening to David
Lawrence from UNC give his annexation overview which the House
committee already heard--the joint commission would have to start from
"It would be good if this commission doesn't meet. The
anti-property rights Senate would simply undermine any real
recommendations. Senator Basnight had the audacity to appoint
Senator Rand to this joint commission--the same person who
single-handledly killed the moratorium bill."
Best Case Scenario: The Commission doesn't meet or admits that
the recommendations are far from complete due to time constraints and
their primary recommendation is that the legislature needs to consider more significant action.
Worst-Case Scenario (Likely): Committee meets and the bill and
report drafting is done behind closed doors as is typical. The
recommendations tinker with the annexation law to give the impression
like something has been done. The League celebrates by being able
to point to the sham commission's work as the reason why the forced
annexation issue doesn't need to be addressed beyond what is contained
in the recommendations.
This is a dangerous committee for
annexation reformers--nothing good is likely to come out of it--the
question is whether something bad will come out of it, and how can the damage
Michael Barone warns us that Democrats still have a chance to secure a *filibuster-proof 60-vote majority in the U.S. Senate.
What would that mean?
The results in these three races could make an enormous difference in
public policy. With 60 votes in the Senate, Democrats will probably
pass the card check bill designed to abolish secret ballots in
unionization elections. The likely result: a sharp rise in the 8
percent of private-sector employees represented by unions. We can see
the difference this can make by looking at another issue that's being
debated: the Detroit Three auto bailout backed by Barack Obama and
Democratic congressional leaders (the subject of my forthcoming
Creators Syndicate column). Why are the Detroit Three in such trouble?
Well, the lavish healthcare benefits negotiated
by the companies and the United Auto Workers mean that total
compensation paid workers by the Detroit Three is 52 percent higher
than Toyota's and 132 percent above the U.S. manufacturing average. Is
this what we want for large swaths of the private-sector economy?
*This assumes the issue facing a filibuster threat would produce no dissenters from the Democratic caucus line. Alternately, Democratic leaders would need to pull over liberal or moderate Republican votes to make up for Democratic defections.
I love Rick Steves' travel recommendations. On his advice, my son and I hiked to a small mountain Gasthaus in Switzerland that was cut into a cliff, spectacular views, friendly people and fantastic food.
But I hate his politics. Here is his gushing account of what he thinks the Obama victory means to Europeans.
After the election of Obama, Europe looks at us differently. Now,
ambassadors will speak the languages of the countries in which they are
posted. Cities will celebrate rather than shut down when the American
president comes to town. Europe will look to America with more respect.
When our president speaks, Europeans will actually want to listen. In
an odd twist, now Europe is actually jealous when it looks at our
leader — a man who embodies our high ideals of pluralism and
inclusivity...an eloquent speaker who's intellectual, who's at ease
with and enjoys sophistication. For Americans traveling to Europe,
things are suddenly more fun. I personally cannot wait to get back to
Europe in the Obama era.
Perhaps it was his effective demonstration of the term "class warfare."
Edwards was so effective at pitting class against class that William Safire's Political Dictionary starts its definition of "class warfare" this way:
A charge of seeking power by dividing economic groups into predatory rich and oppressed poor.
Senator John Edwards, Democrat of North Carolina, made "two Americas" his central theme in campaigning as John Kerry's running mate in 2004. President Bush noted that "Angry talk, and class warfare rhetoric, and economic isolationism won't get anybody hired." When Edwards in 2007 began his campaign for the top spot in 2008, he was quickly attacked by conservative commentators as pitting the rich (of which there are few) against the poor (of which there are many, though a lower percentage vote). David Limbaugh in The Washington Times wrote that liberals "loudly profess their allegiance to capitalism, but resent the inequitable monetary results it produces. Isn't that what John Edwards' 'two Americas' theme is all about?" Columnist Robert Novak quoted an unnamed "party insider" saying that Edwards "came to Washington as a 'New Democrat,' but he's not that kind of Democrat anymore. He's into class warfare."
... the Carolina Journal Online Friday interview with Kristina Rasmussen, you might enjoy revisiting her presentation during a summer tax reform symposium sponsored by the Wake County Young Republicans.
Camille Paglia writes this Salon article about Palin, Ayers, etc.
How dare Palin not embrace abortion as the ultimate civilized ideal
of modern culture? How tacky that she speaks in a vivacious regional
accent indistinguishable from that of Western Canada! How risible that
she graduated from the University of Idaho and not one of those plush,
pampered commodes of received opinion whose graduates, in their rush to
believe the worst about her, have demonstrated that, when it comes to
sifting evidence, they don't know their asses from their elbows.
Democrats are going to wake up from their sadomasochistic, anti-Palin
orgy with a very big hangover. The evil genie released during this
sorry episode will not so easily go back into its bottle. A shocking
level of irrational emotionalism and at times infantile rage was
exposed at the heart of current Democratic ideology -- contradicting
Democratic core principles of compassion, tolerance and independent
thought. One would have to look back to the Eisenhower 1950s for
parallels to this grotesque lock-step parade of bourgeois
provincialism, shallow groupthink and blind prejudice.
Sarah Palin, and I've heartily enjoyed her arrival on the national
stage. As a career classroom teacher, I can see how smart she is -- and
quite frankly, I think the people who don't see it are the stupid ones,
wrapped in the fuzzy mummy-gauze of their own worn-out partisan dogma.
So she doesn't speak the King's English -- big whoop! There is a
powerful clarity of consciousness in her eyes. She uses language with
the jumps, breaks and rippling momentum of a be-bop saxophonist. I
stand on what I said (as a staunch pro-choice advocate) in my last two
columns -- that Palin as a pro-life wife, mother and ambitious
professional represents the next big shift in feminism. Pro-life women
will save feminism by expanding it, particularly into the more
traditional Third World.
Catch this about William Ayers and his wife, Bernardine Dohrn and don't miss Paglia's slam of the national media at the end.
Ayers comes off in the film [2002 documentary "The Weather Underground] as a vapid, slightly dopey, chronic
juvenile with stunted powers of ethical reasoning. The real revelation
is his wife, Bernardine Dohrn (who evidently worked at the same large
Chicago law firm as Michelle Obama in the mid-1990s). Of course I had
heard of Dohrn -- hers was one of the most notorious names of our
baby-boom generation -- and I knew her black-and-white police mug shot.
But I had never seen footage of her speaking or interacting with
others. Well, it's pretty obvious who wears the pants in that family!
mystery of Bernardine Dohrn: How could such a personable, attractive,
well-educated young woman end up saying such things at a 1969 political
rally as this (omitted in the film) about the Manson murders: "Dig it.
First they killed those pigs, then they ate dinner in the same room
with them. They even shoved a fork into a victim's stomach. Wild!" And
how could Dohrn have so ruthlessly pursued a decade-long crusade of
hatred and terrorism against innocent American citizens and both
private and public property?
"The Weather Underground" never
searches for answers, but it does show Dohrn, then and now, as a
poised, articulate woman of extremely high intelligence and surprising
inwardness. The audio extra of her reading the collective's first
public communiqué ("Revolutionary violence is the only way") is
chilling. But the tumultuous footage of her 1980 surrender to federal
authorities is a knockout. Mesmerized, I ran the clip six or seven
times of her seated at a lawyer's table while reading her still defiant
statement. The sober scene -- with Dohrn hyper-alert in a handsome
turtleneck and tweedy jacket -- was tailor-made for Jane Fonda in her
"Klute" period, androgynous shag. Only illegalities by federal
investigators prevented Dohrn from being put away on ice for a long,
Given that Obama had served on a Chicago board with Ayers and
approved funding of a leftist educational project sponsored by Ayers,
one might think that the unrepentant Ayers-Dohrn couple might be of
some interest to the national media. But no, reporters have been too
busy playing mini-badminton with every random spitball about Sarah
Palin, who has been subjected to an atrocious and at times delusional
level of defamation merely because she has the temerity to hold
North Carolina awarded its electoral votes to the Democratic presidential candidate for the first time in three decades. What does that mean for the future of Tar Heel politics? John Hood ventures an educated guess in the next edition of Carolina Journal Radio.
Chad Adams also has election results on his mind. He’ll discuss the local tax votes that crashed and burned in more than a dozen North Carolina counties last week.
All the recent talk about financial sector bailouts and economic stimulus plans has bothered David Bobb of Hillsdale College. Why? No one has discussed the constitutional limits that are supposed to constrain government actions in times of economic turmoil.
Speaking of turmoil, the departure of George W. Bush from the White House does not mean the end of the terrorist threat against the United States. That’s the message retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Thomas McInerney is sending as the federal administration prepares for a transition.
And county supervisor John Stirrup of Prince William County, Virginia, will offer suggestions to North Carolina local governments looking for ways to address illegal immigration.